EASY! EASY! British Sea Power, Kokos, Jan 2008

Six weeks or more late… Oh well.

This was something of a bilocation opportunity for BBO as we saw BSP in our respective hometowns a few days apart; it sounds like I had the best of it, maybe because this was the end of the British leg of the tour. Plus the usual BSP hijinks had led to two members, Woody and Phil Sumner, ending up on the injured list (only the better class of band has a cornet/french horn player who knocks themselves out landing on his face from a 12 foot speaker), and they’d only just recovered in time for this gig.

I thought it was fantastic – we were pretty close to the front and got to see a band clearly making a night of it and getting an even more frenzied reception than usual (cries of ‘Sea Power! Sea Power!’ right from the off, sympathetic foliage, etc). They played a good bit of the new album, which I think is a cracker, and along with the instant favourites – ‘Atom’, ‘No Lucifer’, ‘Waving Flags’ – there was a powerfully affecting version of ‘The Great Skua’, which gets a bit lost on the record but sounded majestic, beautiful and lonesome here. Highlights from the first two records also present and correct, as we moved towards the end of the set we were treated to some BSP theatre – Eamon (Brakes/ex-BSP) and some other lucky fella as wrestlers for ‘No Lucifer’, surely the first time the old Camden Palace has been shaken by Big Daddy’s old warcry of ‘Easy! Easy!’, and then the whole lunatic circus for the finale. I had a genuinely odd moment when one of the flags adorning the back of the stage lifted and a beast’s face stared out at us; no one made much of it because it was Ursine Ultra, the ten foot bear. Of course it was, I should have known! So it was the full works: foliage (a little), flags, wrestlers, and a giant bear. And then Noble did his clambering about bit, up onto the balcony above my head – I was proud to support him as he clung to the wall.

Great stuff, one of those gigs where you come out grinning. No ‘Lately’ or ‘True Adventures’ but I think this is a band with too many great songs to squeeze into a setlist. God bless them in SXSW, on The Culture Show (15th March) and on Countryfile (23rd March).

The Great Skua’ – British Sea Power – from Do You Like Rock Music?

Everyone Must Be Saved‘ – British Sea Power – from the ‘Waving Flags’ single

Oh Larsen B‘ – British Sea Power – from Open Season – mainly because the mighty Of Miracles covered this recently.


Photos by Siobhan


About jkneale

BothBarsOn's London correspondent.

Posted on March 14, 2008, in Gig reviews. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Just listened to The Great Skua. Wow. Very atmospheric. Thanks for opening a door for me :o)

  2. Great write up and top pics. I think I only left short by them because they’d been hyped to stupid proportions. Plus we didn’t get anything like bears and the like up here – minimal foliage as well. And they weren’t loud enough. That said my fave bit was Great Skua followed by Atom – the gig seemed to get going a bit after that.

    Still love em though. Been back to Decline recently and it just sounds better and better. Ta for the b-side.

  3. Sorry if I was part of the hype – but I’ve never been anything but deafened and impressed, particularly deafened. Maybe they need to find a new venue in Manchester

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